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Auburn holds off cold-shooting Seminoles

EAST SURPRISE: Justin Brownlee scores for St. John’s, which is 3-0 in the Big East.

Associated Press

EAST SURPRISE: Justin Brownlee scores for St. John’s, which is 3-0 in the Big East.

AUBURN, Ala. — Tigers guard Earnest Ross said that when his team plays hard, it can compete with anybody, and Monday night he was right.

Freshman Josh Langford had a career-high 16 points as the Tigers won their fourth game in a row, 65-60 over Florida State.

Auburn (7-7), whose most significant win entering Monday came against Middle Tennessee State, beat a team that was fresh off a win over Baylor, a 3-seed in last year's NCAA Tournament.

"Since the beginning of the season, we've gotten a lot better," said guard Josh Wallace, who had nine points and seven assists. "And it's starting to show."

After an 11-0 run in 2:28 gave the Tigers their largest lead of the night, 45-36, with 11:15 remaining, the Seminoles (11-4) responded with a 10-1 run that ended on a Michael Snaer 3-pointer to tie it at 46.

Langford hit his fourth 3-pointer to put Auburn up 49-46 with 4:42 to go, and the Tigers put away FSU down the stretch.

"These guys are learning so much, learning how to play hard, together and unselfish," Tigers coach Tony Barbee said. "The biggest part of all that is learning how to win. It doesn't just happen."

NO. 10 KENTUCKY 86, PENN 62: Brandon Knight had 22 points and Josh Harrellson added 12 points and 11 rebounds for the host Wildcats (12-2), who hit 12 of their first 13 second-half shots to bust it open.

ST. JOHN'S 61, NO. 13 GEORGETOWN 58: Justin Brownlee had 15 points, including the game-changing basket with 10 seconds left, and the host Red Storm won its fifth straight and improved to 3-0 in the Big East, its best since 1999-2000 when it opened 4-0. The Hoyas (12-3, 1-2) had won four of five.

NO. 16 TEXAS A&M 66, NICHOLLS 55: David Loubeau had 18 points and Khris Middleton 17 for the host Aggies (13-1), who trailed much of the first half but rallied to their 10th straight win.

NO. 17 KANSAS ST. 92, SAVANNAH ST. 61: Jacob Pullen had 24 points in his return from a three-game suspension, and the host Wildcats (12-3) cruised in their final tuneup before Big 12 play.

NO. 18 MICH. ST. 65, N'WESTERN 62: Draymond Green had 15 points, including an offensive rebound basket after a missed free throw with 12 seconds left, and the visiting Spartans (10-4, 2-0 Big Ten) held off a furious Wildcats finish.

BULLDOGS SUSPENSIONS: Renardo Sidney's staying. Elgin Bailey's going.

That's the aftermath of a nationally televised brawl between two Mississippi State players in the stands of a tournament in Honolulu on Dec. 23. The fight caused both players to be suspended indefinitely.

Both players were reinstated. But while Sidney, a sophomore, remains with the program, Bailey, a junior, asked for his release.

MINNESOTA: Guard Devoe Joseph was suspended for the second time this season and will not play against Indiana tonight.

AP POLL: Duke, Ohio State and Kansas remained 1-2-3 for the fourth straight week. Washington, Cincinnati and UNLV moved in at Nos. 23-25, replacing Minnesota, Louisville and Temple. UCF remained 19th.


UCONN DROPS FROM TOP: UConn, whose NCAA-record 90-game winning streak ended Thursday night with a loss to Stanford, lost its nearly three-year hold on the top ranking when it was overtaken by Baylor and dropped to No.  2. Connecticut had been the top team for a record 51 straight weeks, beginning Feb. 18, 2008. FSU moved up from 25th to 24th.

NO. 8 UNC 97, UNC-CENTRAL 40: Krista Gross and Waltiea Rolle had 16 points each for the host Tar Heels (14-0), who blew it open with a late 36-0 run in their final ACC tuneup.

Auburn holds off cold-shooting Seminoles 01/03/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, January 4, 2011 12:23am]
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